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#1 Thing You Must Encourage Your Buyers To Do When Buying an Older Home

When you are the process of buying an older or historic home - there's one important inspection people often don't think to perform.

As a Top Tampa Bay Real Estate Agent - you don't want to make the mistake of not recommending this to your own buyers. Even as an experienced real estate broker, I made this mistake myself. I was buying a 1950's flipped home in St. Petersburg, Florida. The flipper/contractor had done a beautiful job and replaced all plumbing and electrical on the home...or so I believed.

One day I was taking a bubble bath and as I let the water out of the tub and started getting ready for the day, I heard an odd noise coming from the other end of the house. In fact, from the other bathroom in the house. As the tub was draining in one bathroom, sewage was in fact coming up the shower drain in my OTHER bathroom. I was horrified and had no idea what was happening. I called my trusty local plumber who was pretty sure he knew what the issue was.

The first thing he did was do a sewer scope which is when you insert a line with a tiny camera attached into the sewer to look for clogs and things like tree roots that may have invaded the sewer line. Turned out I had orangeburg sewer lines which were original to the house and were collapsing in a few places which was causing the backup into my shower when a large volume of water was sent down the drain. So much for ALL plumbing being replaced!

Often times when people remodel a home they claim everything is remodeled but that does NOT include what's under the house or outside in the ground. Had I paid a few hundred dollars to have a sewer scope done when I was in my inspection window of purchasing the home and discovered this, I could have asked for a discount on the home or for the seller to replace the orangeburg with PVC prior to closing. But because I didn't, I wound up spending about $4,000 on new PVC and labor.

These days as a real estate broker, I would recommend to ALL buyers of homes even older than say 1990 to have a sewer scope done just to check what's going on there. It will cost them a few hundred dollars during their inspection window but could potentially save them thousands down the road if issues are found. And you as the agent look like a hero if an issue is found and you avert a major crisis down the road. Win-win for everyone!

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